In the event a third world conflict broke out during the height of the Cold War, Queen Elizabeth II had a speech for the Britons ready. The text of that chilling speech has now been released, reports npr.org on Aug. 1.
The practice speech, written under possible Cold War scenarios, was made public under the “thirty-year rule,” the vernacular term for a U.K. mandate that calls for cabinet papers of a government to be released publicly thirty years after they are created.
The monarch of course never uttered the words that were penned by her advisors, and likely may have never read them herself.
The dummy speech was released by Britain’s National Archives in a tranche of declassified documents.
Included with the speech were other interesting tidbits of British history, including a covert plan to move coal in the event of a miners’ strike, a plan to protect London by flooding areas of Essex and Kent during the construction of the Thames Barrier, a proposal to find a “fertile female panda” for the London Zoo, and a laser weapon sent to “dazzle” Argentine pilots during the Falklands war.
The speech opened with the Queen harking back to World War II, then drawing a parallel to the supposed events of the current world war. In the speech, she urges unity and resoluteness in the “madness” of war.
The complete speech, as carried on BBC News:
“The horrors of war could not have seemed more remote as my family and I shared our Christmas joy with the growing family of the Commonwealth. Now, this madness of war is once more spreading through the world and our brave country must again prepare itself to survive against great odds.
“I have never forgotten the sorrow and the pride I felt as my sister and I huddled around the nursery wireless set listening to my father’s [George VI’s] inspiring words on that fateful day in 1939. Not for a single moment did I imagine that this solemn and awful duty would one day fall to me.
“But whatever terrors lie in wait for us all, the qualities that have helped to keep our freedom intact twice already during this sad century will once more be our strength.
“My husband and I share with families up and down the land the fear we feel for sons and daughters, husbands and brothers who have left our side to serve their country.
“My beloved son Andrew is at this moment in action with his unit and we pray continually for his safety and for the safety of all servicemen and women at home and overseas.
“It is this close bond of family life that must be our greatest defense against the unknown. If families remain united and resolute, giving shelter to those living alone and unprotected, our country’s will to survive cannot be broken.
“As we strive together to fight off the new evil, let us pray for our country and men of goodwill wherever they may be. God Bless you all.